Witch Trials In The Crucible

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On a day that had started out the same as any other, in January of 1962, Reverend Parris’ nine year old daughter, Elizabeth, and 11 year old niece, Abigail Williams, began having manic episodes. The girls would shout blasphemies, utter peculiar sounds, throw things, enter into trances, contort their bodies in odd and unnatural positions, and would run around pretending to be different creatures. Reverend Parris did not know what had gotten into the two. Reverend Parris summoned the local doctor to try and find an explanation as to why the children were acting out. The only reason the doctor could come up with was that the supernatural had to have been playing a part in the girls swift and abrupt change in behavior. Later on, the two girls became…show more content…
Dozens of people were brought in for questioning from not only Salem, but other villages as well. Governor William Phipps ordered an established court for the hearings. The Court of Oyer was set up to hear the trials, and the Terminer was set up to decide the verdict for three counties. The first case to be brought to the witch trial courts was an older woman known for her promiscuity and gossiping habits. It is on record that when Bridget Bishop was asked if she had committed any kind of witchcraft she responded with, “I am as innocent as the child unborn.” Nevertheless, Bishop was still found to be guilty and was the first person to be hung on what later became known as Gallows…show more content…
The court ignored Mather’s request to leave out testimonies about dreams and visions. Five more people were sentenced to be hung in July, five more in August, and eight in september. Increase Mather, then the president of Harvard, eventually followed in his sons footsteps and denounced the use of spectral evidence in court cases. Both of the Mathers, the father and the son, decided they would rather witches escape persecution than one innocent person be condemned. Governor Phipps’, who previously had established the court, wife was later accused and questioned for

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